Modern Gretsch Guitars

Modifying a pinned bridge

1

I just got a new 6120 that has a bigsby bridge, which I've never been a fan of. I want to put a tru-arc on it, but the spacing is different on the bigsby bridge. The newer pinned bridge gretsches have two little screws poking out of the top of the guitar that fit into recesses on the bottom of the bridge base. So the way I see it, I have two options:

  1. Remove the posts, fill the old holes and redrill them to the right spacing

  2. Get a new bridge base and attempt to drill out the tiny recesses on the bottom to fit the pins.

Option 2 sounds worse, but I've never attempted anything like this before. Of course, I could just unscrew the pins and return it to floating, but I'd like to see if either of these options works first. If anyone's done something like this before, any help is appreciated!

2

Not my guitar, but here's a picture for those unfamiliar with the newer gretsch pin system.

3

Leave the pins (keeps the guitar original) and drill the base -- much easier to do. Looks like you won't have much to drill away for the new bridge base. You'd probably have to get a new base anyway.

4

We can make a Tru-Arc to fit the Bigsby Comp spacing - or I can sell you a Gretsch base with a standard-spaced Tru-Arc. The Gretsch bases already have the divots in the bottom which should fit your pin locations.

There should be no need to modify anything!

5

I have had to do this procedure already on 3 Gretsch guitars: Unscrew the Allen-key grubscrews from the guitar and keep them in a safe place. Don't fill the holes, they will be covered by the bridge base. You now have a floating bridge. The whole procedure can be reversed in 5 minutes and will be back to original

6

I'd go with one of Proteus' recommendations. Couple things I would consider: If your present bridge base is nice and flush with the contour of the guitar top, I might lean toward a Tru Arc with hole spacing to match the original Bigsby bridge....or if you don't mind a little sanding a standard spaced Tru Arc and a new bridge base would give you the option of using the Tru Arc on another guitar if you so choose. You really can't go wrong either way.

7

We can make a Tru-Arc to fit the Bigsby Comp spacing - or I can sell you a Gretsch base with a standard-spaced Tru-Arc. The Gretsch bases already have the divots in the bottom which should fit your pin locations.

There should be no need to modify anything!

– Proteus

+1

This is a non-issue. He can make a Tru-Arc to fit the Bigsby Comp spacing - just let him know when you order. I've done this and it's the way to go.

If you like the sound of the Bigsby aluminum at all, the aluminum Tru-arc will have the same twangyness but is better/fatter sounding. I love this bridge and currently have it on 3 Gretsches.

8

Unless you are a complete crazed wild man live you really only need to have the bass side pinned anyway...however, I actually spent several years actually being a complete crazed wild man live (jumping on peoples tables, onto the standup bass, off the stage into the dance floor etc etc) and I've never had an intonation problem with the bridge just pinned on the bass side.

9

So now Gretsch as begun pinning the bridges for the Bigsby? My 2016 had no pins. I followed the "customized BZ Melita" installation! I’ll say once i did this i had no issue with the Bigsby and tuning problems. My guitar guy told me it wouldn’t work, too!


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